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  #11  
Old 01-24-2010, 12:56 AM
NeonKaos NeonKaos is offline
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And I disagree with the statement that poly relationships are just like mono relationships but with more people. I really do. There is a different dynamic. In a mono relationship, I know my partner is checking out other people, but not acting on it (as long as the trust is there and such). That acting on it is GREAT, as long as everyone's on board, honest with themselves and each other, etc. And people aren't always like that.

I don't mean to hijack the focus of this thread, but since you are the OP of the thread and you said this, I feel compelled to point out that this does not explain why you think poly and mono relationships have a "different dynamic". Either way, the people should have trust, be "on board, honest with themselves and each other, etc." and in either mono or poly situations, "people aren't always like that". So, this does not explain what, other than the number of people involved, you find to be "different" about the dynamics.

I am glad to hear that you and your daughter got out on your own ok.

Last edited by NeonKaos; 01-24-2010 at 01:02 AM.
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  #12  
Old 01-24-2010, 05:17 AM
Creatress Creatress is offline
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this does not explain why you think poly and mono relationships have a "different dynamic".
Because in a mono relationship, you can get away without the level of trust in your partner and emotional self-awareness, communication skills, etc. You can--it's better if you have them, of course, but you can manage without. Poly relationships pretty much don't work without these things.
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  #13  
Old 01-24-2010, 01:43 PM
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Breathesgirl Breathesgirl is offline
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I struggled with the 'Am I Poly' question for a couple of years. My primary had another s/o while I was here, at home, wondering what they were doing, etc. After nearly five years I still don't have another other but I have figured out that I do have the capacity to love more than one person at a time & I will be able to handle it once the right person(s) come along & enter into my life.

The potential is there to be a secondary in an established poly relationship but, with life being what it is, this hasn't happened yet & we're ok with this.

Robin
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  #14  
Old 01-24-2010, 02:54 PM
Ceoli Ceoli is offline
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Because in a mono relationship, you can get away without the level of trust in your partner and emotional self-awareness, communication skills, etc. You can--it's better if you have them, of course, but you can manage without. Poly relationships pretty much don't work without these things.
I've known plenty of poly relationships that that have managed with poor communication , self awareness and low levels of trust. They suck, but they do exist and manage to "get away with it". Just like a mono relationship can suck with poor communication, self awareness and low levels of trust and still manage to "get away with it". The same dynamics are in play. Either it's healthy or it isn't. Now it could be that people might be willing to put up with more in a mono relationship. I don't know. But the fundamental dynamics are still the same.
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  #15  
Old 01-24-2010, 03:21 PM
NeonKaos NeonKaos is offline
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Because in a mono relationship, you can get away without the level of trust in your partner and emotional self-awareness, communication skills, etc. You can--it's better if you have them, of course, but you can manage without. Poly relationships pretty much don't work without these things.

I don't find that to be a different "dynamic" between mono and poly relationships, I find that to be a function of the particular individuals involved in a relationship.

I don't see a relationship as "working" if you are "getting away without trust, awareness and communication". I see it as "limping".

These things you describe are not fundamentally peculiar to a TYPE of relationship. They are essential components to ANY healthy relationship.
You will not make a successful "mono" OR "poly" relationship if you lack basic trust and communication.

"Getting away with/without" is most often used when referring to a dishonest activity or destructive behaviour pattern, or some other kind of less-than-satisfactory scenario. You really think "getting away with/without" something in a relationship is good enough? There's the root of your problem right there.

Yes, I know that I don't know you and i don't know "how your life works". I've read all of your posts and you probably think that I'm "judging" and I don't have all the "facts". But I have read enough to be able to say without a doubt that you need to work on YOURSELF before you get involved in another relationship, especially since you have seen first-hand how these things can affect a child.

Last edited by NeonKaos; 01-24-2010 at 03:34 PM.
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  #16  
Old 01-25-2010, 06:25 AM
quila quila is offline
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Originally Posted by YGirl View Post
I don't mean to hijack the focus of this thread, but since you are the OP of the thread and you said this, I feel compelled to point out that this does not explain why you think poly and mono relationships have a "different dynamic". Either way, the people should have trust, be "on board, honest with themselves and each other, etc." and in either mono or poly situations, "people aren't always like that". So, this does not explain what, other than the number of people involved, you find to be "different" about the dynamics.
I believe that there's more to a relationship dynamic than communication and trust.

The only extent to which I agree that mono and poly relationships are the same is this: Every relationship is different. So in the sense that "every poly relationship is different" then yes, they're just like mono relationships. Is that what you mean though?

I feel that the difference in relationship dynamic between mono and poly is how you deal with jealousy. In a monogamous relationship, you have the right to expect your partner not to fall in love with another person, and the right to be jealous and angry if they do. In a relationship with polyamorous people, you still have the right to be jealous, but you make the commitment to own the jealousy as being your issue, and not expect your partner to curb their behaviour to pacify your jealous nature.

Monogamous people have the right to expect to be the center of their spouse's universe. Polyamorous people have the responsibility to accept that their spouse's universe may orbit in a figure-8 or some vastly more complicated celtic knot. Yes, there are many poly relationships with a primary and then secondary relationships, and so these primaries still have the right to expect being the center of the universe, but this only comes back to "every relationship is different."

So unless that's what you mean by "poly relationships are just like mono ones but with more people," then I also disagree.
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  #17  
Old 01-25-2010, 06:42 AM
quila quila is offline
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I know that I want freedom in my relationship. I know that I want to not have to be PARANOID about talking to someone, flirting, a kiss. I want my love to come home from a night out and tell me about the cute girl he made out with or the guy he thought was hot. And while I know that open relationships can turn into poly ones pretty easily if given the time....*sigh* I don't know.

I suppose it doesn't MATTER when I don't have any relationship, let alone more than one. :p But I don't want to be a secondary (again). At this point in my life, I need to be the only really important one for a while. I need to heal, because in this last relationship, my needs ALWAYS came last or there was emotional hell to pay, and I need some healthy adoration and respect.
The first paragraph sounds very poly to me. The second paragraph does not contradict the first. There's nothing wrong with the desire to be the most important person in someone's life, and to have someone else be the most important person in your life. It's healthy to love someone enough to put their needs before your wants, as long as you put your own needs at the very top of your list.

From what I've seen on this forum, many polyamorous people are married and put their spouses at the top of the list. They form secondary relationships with the understanding that these must not harm or interfere with their marriages. So these people are just like you, only they've already found their primaries.

I believe that the universe gives us what we need at different times of our lives, and we only find true love when we're ready to accept and cherish it. I spent years searching and wishing for what I have now, and I can say without a doubt that if it would have fallen into my lap any earlier than it did, I would have messed it up.
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  #18  
Old 01-25-2010, 07:11 AM
Ceoli Ceoli is offline
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I
The only extent to which I agree that mono and poly relationships are the same is this: Every relationship is different. So in the sense that "every poly relationship is different" then yes, they're just like mono relationships. Is that what you mean though?
That's pretty much true. How mono relationships manifest is as wide and varied as how poly relationships manifest. Which is why I often say that the factor of poly or mono isn't the prevailing cause of any differences in relationships.

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I feel that the difference in relationship dynamic between mono and poly is how you deal with jealousy. In a monogamous relationship, you have the right to expect your partner not to fall in love with another person, and the right to be jealous and angry if they do. In a relationship with polyamorous people, you still have the right to be jealous, but you make the commitment to own the jealousy as being your issue, and not expect your partner to curb their behaviour to pacify your jealous nature.
I disagree with this assessment. First it assumes that jealousy only manifests within a monogamous relationship when a partner is falling in love with another partner. I've seen plenty of people get jealous over all sorts of things that have nothing to do with their partner falling in love with someone else. Having a jealous nature is just as stressful on a mono relationship as it is in a poly relationship because if a person's *nature* is jealous that usually means there are insecurities that haven't been dealt with. I don't know of *any* relationship that can thrive and be healthy if the dynamic is driven by the jealous nature of a partner. In both cases, each person should be making the commitment to own their jealousy and not expect their partner to change their behavior for the sake of one's insecurity.

Now, there certainly are cases where jealousy arises as a truthful and valid reaction to a partner's transgressions. This also happens in both mono and poly relationships. A mono partner might be having an inappropriate wandering eye, making their partner feel like they're not as important to them as they think they should be. A poly partner might be spending far too much time with one partner and ignoring the other. These are both cases where the feeling of jealousy serves as a warning that the partner is not living up to their part of the relationship and that needs to be addressed. So again, when those feelings are owned and honestly expressed in good communication, things can get resolved easier, regardless of whether it's a mono or poly relationship. But I've found that in both mono and poly relationships, it's a lot easier to address these things when people own their own emotions about it.

But being mono doesn't mean they have *more* of a right to be jealous than someone who is poly. In both cases jealousy serves a purpose. That purpose can be either a destructive force driven by insecurity or a valuable insight into a problem in the relationship that needs care and attention.

Quote:
Monogamous people have the right to expect to be the center of their spouse's universe. Polyamorous people have the responsibility to accept that their spouse's universe may orbit in a figure-8 or some vastly more complicated celtic knot. Yes, there are many poly relationships with a primary and then secondary relationships, and so these primaries still have the right to expect being the center of the universe, but this only comes back to "every relationship is different."
Again, I know plenty of thriving mono relationships where they don't subscribe to the expectation that they are the center of their partner's universe. They show a good deal of independence. There are friends, family, professional commitments, and all sorts of things that get balanced with a mono relationship. A healthy and thriving relationship will usually acknowledge that and work to keep that balance.

And as far as poly relationships go, the same sorts of balancing acts are done with other partners in addition to the other things. *But*...when I am with my partner, I treat that time just like anyone would treat that time with their partner or partners: with commitment and full attention. I would expect nothing less during the time I have with any partner.
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  #19  
Old 01-25-2010, 07:30 AM
quila quila is offline
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I disagree with this assessment. First it assumes that jealousy only manifests within a monogamous relationship when a partner is falling in love with another partner. I've seen plenty of people get jealous over all sorts of things that have nothing to do with their partner falling in love with someone else. Having a jealous nature is just as stressful on a mono relationship as it is in a poly relationship because if a person's *nature* is jealous that usually means there are insecurities that haven't been dealt with. I don't know of *any* relationship that can thrive and be healthy if the dynamic is driven by the jealous nature of a partner. In both cases, each person should be making the commitment to own their jealousy and not expect their partner to change their behavior for the sake of one's insecurity.

Again, I know plenty of thriving mono relationships where they don't subscribe to the expectation that they are the center of their partner's universe. They show a good deal of independence. There are friends, family, professional commitments, and all sorts of things that get balanced with a mono relationship. A healthy and thriving relationship will usually acknowledge that and work to keep that balance.
Both very good points.

My best friend has a very jealous boyfriend, and when they started dating, she liked it because it made her feel very important to him. But as time went on, it started making her feel trapped and untrusted. Unbeknownst to him, she's actually cheated on every single other boyfriend she's ever had, so his fears aren't entirely unwarranted, whether he knows it or not. But it's not her track record that makes him be jealous, it's his possessiveness. Thank you for reminding me that this isn't justified just because they've made a commitment to monogamy.

On the second point, I hear what you're saying. I'm a full-time student and that's a huge priority in my life. While I love him dearly and would do anything for him, I have to admit that I'm selfishly at the center of my own universe (only-child-syndrome) and even though his life would have been easier if I'd been working full-time, I have my goals and I'm determined to achieve them. A lot of what my husband does, he does for me: He's finally found a job that he truly loves which pays enough for me to go to school, but for the past year, he's been taking a lot of jobs that he didn't particularly enjoy just because they paid enough to afford my education. He also has a daughter with whom he tries to spend as much time as possible, but it's difficult since she lives 90min away. So neither of us is completely at the center of each other's universes...

Thank you for your insight!
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  #20  
Old 01-25-2010, 03:57 PM
GroundedSpirit GroundedSpirit is offline
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I believe that the universe gives us what we need at different times of our lives, and we only find true love when we're ready to accept and cherish it. I spent years searching and wishing for what I have now, and I can say without a doubt that if it would have fallen into my lap any earlier than it did, I would have messed it up.
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